A gangster was killed and nearly two dozen criminals were arrested by police in 18 encounters in different districts of Uttar Pradesh during the past two days.
Gangster Inderpal, who carried a reward of Rs 25,000, was gunned down by the Special Task Force in the encounter in Naglakhepad jungle on Friday.
A police spokesperson said that the encounters took place in Bulandshahr, Shamli, Kanpur, Saharanpur, Lucknow, Baghpat, Muzaffarnagar, Gorakhpur, Hapur and Meerut.
According to Superintendent of Police (STF) Rajiv Narain Singh, Inderpal was wanted in more than 30 cases of loot and murder in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.
The police also claimed to have recovered countrymade arms, ammunition, motorcycle, cars apart from cash which was robbed by the criminals.
The maximum number of encounters was reported from Bulandshahr and Shamli, where four and six criminals were arrested respectively. Three of those arrested in Bulandshahr carried a cash reward for Rs 20,000 each on their head. Two encounters took place in Kanpur.
Yesterday, two suspected criminals and as many policemen, including a station house officer, were injured in an encounter in Gorakhpur. The incident took place when Maneesh Yadav and Manoj Yadav were escaping after threatening a village head, police said.
Police said that a team was rushed to the spot after receiving a complaint from the victim. In the encounter, Station House Officer, Khorabar, Sudhir Kumar, and Sub-Inspector, Jhangha, Sunil Kumar Singh suffered minor injuries.
The police have seized a .32 bore pistol, a 12 bore gun, bullets and the motorcycle on which they were escaping. The criminals were injured in the gunfight. They were subsequently arrested and admitted to BRD Medical College.
Police claimed that they have confessed to their involvement in the murder of businessman Dinesh Gupta of Nai Bazaar, Jhangha, in Gorakhpur on Sunday.
The Uttar Pradesh Police has intensified its crackdown on criminals after the new DGP O P Singh took charge last month.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and vowed to take strict action against the criminals after his government faced criticism over a string of crimes in the state.